If a certain Bucktown resident seems a lot more relaxed these days than he did when he was managing the White Sox, that's because, well, he is.
"I really like living a regular person life," Ozzie Guillen told RedEye in an exclusive interview Wednesday. "So far it's been pretty good."
RedEye caught up with the only man in the past 90-some years to lead a Chicago baseball team to a World Series championship before an event benefiting his eponymous Ozzie Guillen Foundation at River North hot spot The Grid.
"I don't have to worry about being [at the ballpark] at 1 o'clock and dealing with a lot of people," he said. "I don't have to rush to my house to eat and go to the ballpark."
These days, he's focused on his work as an analyst for ESPN and building support for his foundation, free from the rigors of life in professional baseball for the first time in decades.
The hard-charging former shortstop-turned-skipper said he's just as determined to change the fortunes of our city's youth through his foundation as he once was the city's baseball fortunes.
"We're going to help a lot of people," he said. "Right now, we have a school on the South Side of Chicago, we're going to help them. Hopefully we'll do two or three more before the season, the year is over. Hopefully people help."
That's because, in addition to committing his foundation to Chicago, Guillen has committed his family to the city that embraced him for so many years on a full-time basis, eschewing a warmer climate for the Windy City.
"I live here in Chicago," he said. "I sold my house in Miami. My only house I have here in the United States is in Chicago now."
Outside of his foundation, Guillen said he's living the dream in the latest chapter of his life.
"I travel more now," he said. "I went to Spain for a couple weeks. I went to Colombia to watch bullfights. I'm on the plane a lot. I play golf anytime I want to."
He said he hasn't spoken to former teammate and current Sox manager Robin Ventura in years.
Despite the Sox's early-season struggles, Guillen said the team is in good hands with his successor.
"Robin is a tremendous baseball man, very smart," he said. "I think he's coaching very well. I know that they're not playing good right now but I think that Robin is doing what he's supposed to do."
He's also not looking back on his last gig in Miami.
Things didn't live up to the lofty expectations that were set for the Marlins heading into the 2012 season, but Guillen said he has no regrets.
"We just played bad," he shrugged. "I think we didn't play the way we thought we would've played. If you're gonna blame somebody, I will take the blame because that's my job, take the blame. Obviously we wish it was a little bit better but it is what it is and we have to move on."
Turns out losing his job in Miami after one season wasn't the withering blow he thought it would be when the Marlins dismissed him following that disappointing 2012.
"When I got fired, I thought that things were going to be a little different, but it's not," he said. "I think my family helped me a lot."
But surely he misses his old routine, right?
"No," he said before pausing at length. "I think I need a break. I need a break because so many years doing this, it gets to the point, you need a break to refuel yourself and start over."
Guillen said he's enjoying living a "regular person life" in the latest chapter of his life, but he's not ruling out a return to the dugout at some point.
Just don't count on seeing him in one anytime soon.
"I'm really … I'm not even looking for it," he said. "If it happens, it happens, we will be there. Right now, I'm fine. Right now I feel very relaxed, I don't have that much stress."
Matt Lindner is a RedEye special contributor.
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